Tesla is off the hook for allowing play while driving

Tesla will not have to issue a recall of its vehicles after the federal government closed an investigation into the company’s “Passenger Play” feature that allowed games to be played on the infotainment screen while the vehicle was in motion.

The investigation was first opened in December 2021 after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) received customer complaints that said live and online search games — which were supposed to be limited to passenger use only while the vehicle is in motion — could be played by anyone. person. in the car at any time. More than half a million vehicles are included in the scope of the NHTSA investigation.

More than half a million vehicles are included in the scope of the NHTSA investigation

when the edge We tested the feature in late 2021, we can play some Tesla Arcade games while the car is moving. A warning appeared on the screen that only passengers were allowed to play while the vehicle was in motion along with a button asking for confirmation that the player was a passenger. But nothing stopped the driver from pressing the button and playing a game while driving.

Shortly after announcing the investigation, Tesla updated its software to disable the feature. Less than a month later, Tesla reported that 97 percent of its vehicles had completed an over-the-air software update, NHTSA said. But while the investigation is closed, NHTSA says it may still take action in the future if a safety flaw is discovered.

In its response to NHTSA, Tesla said it only recorded a “small fraction” of cases when the Passenger Play feature was active while the vehicle was in motion. Of those instances, “about a third” were shown playing video games without a person in the passenger seat — meaning the driver was likely to interact with the feature.

Tesla is currently focused on several safety investigations, including examining several dozen crashes that occurred when a Tesla car with Autopilot on collided with a stationary emergency vehicle. The company also tops the federal government’s list of accidents and fatalities involving vehicles equipped with advanced driver assistance systems.

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